Freelance writer and poet from London; if you would like to read my poetry, please check out my book, 'Poems on the Page', available from goo.gl/Ta4oAX.
Published December 13th 2012
Second-Hand Charity Bookshop
Yesterday I had an appointment to go to, but due to an admin cock up, I got there and was told that I wasn't scheduled on their system. Much annoyed, I was determined not to have a wasted trip, so on the way home I popped into the Wandsworth Oasis Bookshop in Tooting. Wandsworth Oasis is a chain of five charity shops that support local people with HIV.
Their secondhand bookshop opposite Tooting Bec Station, and is a great place to find rare books at bargain prices. I have made a couple of visits there in the past, and have rarely left empty-handed.
Yesterday was no different, and as soon as I went in I found something that took my fancy. In the sci-fi and fantasy section, there sitting on the shelf was an illustrated copy of The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien for £3. Since to movie is coming out soon, I thought I would take the opportunity to read the book.
Further down the isle, I was looking at the classics section and saw a hardback copy of Tommy And Grizel by J.M. Barrie. Of Barrie's works, I've only ever read Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens and Peter Pan And Wendy, but I have always been interested to know what is less famous writings are like. Leafing through the book, I saw it was dated 1900, and although it does not say so, I think it might be a first edition because 1900 is the original publication date of Tommy And Grizel. I looked for a price tag, but there was none.'This does not bode well', I thought. If something isn't priced, it is usually too expensive. Still, I was interested enough to keep hold of the book, and I would ask at the till when I finished.
I then went to the back room, where they keep the children's books. It's ironic; I never liked reading as a kid, but now I have fallen in love with children's books. While I was browsing, the owner of the shop said he was closing up for lunch - rather early considering it was not even twelve o'clock yet - so I made a quick sweep of the shelves and spotted a couple of Roald Dahl books to add to my collection. All together they were £2.50.
Taking them to the till, I asked how much the Barrie novel was, but as he was in a hurry to close, he could not be bothered to think up a price, and let me have it for free.
That's not the only time I have picked up good deals like this at the Wandsworth Oasis Bookshop, and I'm sure I will get many more in the future.